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OO Gauge Track Cleaning Wagons


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Hi,

I've started looking into 'Track cleaning' wagons, initially the Hornby variety then the Gaugemaster and the ten commandments offerings and finially the CMX 'Clean Machine' Track Cleaner wagon which seems really expensive? I've watched a few video's and it sounds like the Hornby unit isn't much good and the Gaugemaster models are pretty heavy and difficult to pull but do work. To be honest, I've confused myself a bit and was wondering if anybody has any experience with these and can offer any advice.

Thanks in advance. 

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I asked the same question a while back, and one of the recommended models was this from Ten Commandments.

 

https://tencommandmentsmodels.co.uk/product/track-cleaning-wagon/

 

I bought one, and am quite happy with it. It’s not pretty to look at, but it does have ample weight, moves well, and the pads do collect grime.

no connection other than satisfied customer

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We have several.. Only the Dapol is any good and that only in vacuum cleaner mode.  I tow a Peco track cleaning rubber behind a loco within a wagon frame so that  the rubber is always towed and never pushed,.

Spirit based cleaners work as long as you have all metal wheels and no traction tyres otherwise the spirit attacks the rubber and the plastic and makes an awful mess. It also makes the track slippery, which is  bad news...

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1 hour ago, ITG said:

I asked the same question a while back, and one of the recommended models was this from Ten Commandments.

 

https://tencommandmentsmodels.co.uk/product/track-cleaning-wagon/

 

I bought one, and am quite happy with it. It’s not pretty to look at, but it does have ample weight, moves well, and the pads do collect grime.

no connection other than satisfied customer

 

Thanks,

Do you think an 09 Lima shunter could pull it okay? Might give the rascal something to do. 

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1 hour ago, DCB said:

We have several.. Only the Dapol is any good and that only in vacuum cleaner mode.  I tow a Peco track cleaning rubber behind a loco within a wagon frame so that  the rubber is always towed and never pushed,.

Spirit based cleaners work as long as you have all metal wheels and no traction tyres otherwise the spirit attacks the rubber and the plastic and makes an awful mess. It also makes the track slippery, which is  bad news...

 

Are we talking ao the Dapol 'motorised' track cleaning wagon? I've read mixed reports, low power motor, dodgy power pickup and needs perfectly level track?

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2 hours ago, APT Fan said:

 

Thanks,

Do you think an 09 Lima shunter could pull it okay? Might give the rascal something to do. 

 

I would think so; Lima mechs may not be the best detailed or smoothest runners, but they'll pull the side of a house down...

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4 hours ago, APT Fan said:

 

Are we talking ao the Dapol 'motorised' track cleaning wagon? I've read mixed reports, low power motor, dodgy power pickup and needs perfectly level track?

The one with a motor which revolves little pads and has a vacuum cleaner. About £70 on eBay  Great for sucking up debris.

tScreenshot (342).png

 

The problem with all track cleaner wagons  I have come across is good models have coned tyres like the full size and run on the inside corners of the rails.   The cleaners clean the tops of the rails and often miss just the bit where contact is made. OK some poor quality (Not cheap, thinking Dapol Mogul and Hornby Smoky Joe here) have Steam roller flat treads, even some Markits, but they are the ones which derail for no obvious reason, (Thinking Dapol Mogul, mine needed its front pony truck wheels re profiled to conical to stay on the track)

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So the Dapol doesn't look particularly promising and the CMX is expensive. Seems like the Gaugemaster comes out of the review with reasonable credit apart from the colour of the livery? I understood there were other liveries available for that product?

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The same wagon moulding is available in 'RailFreight' Brown/ bauxite and Rail (Maintenence/ Experimental Department ?)Blue and Red as well as the Yellow, so something of a choice to suit different operational periods/ themes. 

 

               Regards,

 

                               John

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Twenty-odd years ago, when I was involved with Taunton Model Railway Group's Bath Green Park layout, we acquired a pair of Centerline track cleaning wagons from the US. They were a pretty new thing at the time and generated quite a bit of interest when we exhibited the (then unfinished) layout at the Warley Show.

 

They work by having a strip of J-cloth  wrapped around a heavy metal roller, running in an aperture in the car's chassis which is of such a size that the roller  doesn't quite keep up so rubs the rail surface as the car moves along. Cleaning fluid is dripped onto the cloth as required. I adapted a Parkside CCT body to conceal the "works" but which lifts off for refreshing the fluid. The group is still using them, AFAIK, which says much about their build quality (they run on Kadee sprung trucks) as well as their efficacy. 

 

A conversion kit, utilising the same principle, made to fit in to the Airfix LMS brake van has been available from Lanarkshire Model Supplies for some years, and AIUI, they now do a less specific version adaptable to various UK wagons, r-t-r, or kit-built.    

 

John

Edited by Dunsignalling
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1 hour ago, APT Fan said:

So the Dapol doesn't look particularly promising and the CMX is expensive. Seems like the Gaugemaster comes out of the review with reasonable credit apart from the colour of the livery? I understood there were other liveries available for that product?

I have it in a previous incarnation in brown by Roco and have to say I wasn't sold on it. Still would recomend the 10 commandments one. I own the Dapol one too and its brilliant as a vacuum whilst poor as a track cleaner.

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On 02/08/2022 at 13:29, Graham108 said:

Have you seen this video - https://youtu.be/aHHsCnCubDk (assuming the creator doesn't mind the sharing as it's published on RMWeb)

 


I’ve just stumbled across this thread …. And seeing your message made me smile …. More than happy for you to share 👍 Even if my own experiences help just one other modeller … then that’s more than worth the effort to compile!

 

I guess to summarise my video, reliable running is a bit of a system … I’ve learnt that unfortunately there’s no one silver-bullet … but several factors are involved; several regarding the track and cleaning fluid used … also the wheelsets and pickups … and other factors … and there’s probably a few more I didn’t cover. Layout size and access and frequency of use also factors as to method of cleaning the track.

 

Choice of cleaning fluid is also a big factor … I’m more than happy with using WD-40 contact cleaner … while I’ve read that others that avoid traction tyres use Inox with success. Both of these are ‘non-polar’ solvents … and much better than polar solvents such as IPA.

 

 

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Don't forget Triang! I acquired one between Christmas and Easter on ebay - part of a £10 job lot which also included an Airfix autocoach and handful of wagons. Though not pretty, it's certainly an improvement over manual cleaning and a Hornby 2721 will pull it without too much trouble (anything larger will handle it easily). Usually running it in both directions over all lines is sufficient for good running.

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